A Bright Future for Birmingham's Independent Retailers

By on 22/09/2009 in News

Birmingham’s network of independent retailers – vital to the city’s creativity and economic health – have received a major boost after Birmingham City Council appointed a new Business Manager to oversee their development and growth on a city-wide basis.

Appointed initially for a period of 18 months, Nigel Godfrey, will head up an initiative to support independent retailers as part of a wider £1 million programme of support for local retail centers, set to be launched in October

His appointment is a key aspect of the Council's wider plans to support local residents and businesses through the recession, and help them prepare for an upturn, as co-ordinated through its specially created Economic Recession Taskforce.

At the forefront of this is a £17 million package of measures, funded through the Working Neighbourhood Fund (WNF), to provide direct support and assistance to local businesses.

Nigel, who will work with dedicated town centre and neighborhood managers in each area will  ensure that independent retailers are able to  take full advantage of all the financial support and business advice available through the WNF and other initiatives.

Nigel said: ” We have a really vibrant network of independent retail sector in Birmingham and I am very much looking forward to working closely with property owners, agents and developers to encourage new independent shops and brands to join us in Birmingham.”

Councillor Neville Summerfield, Cabinet Member for Regeneration said: “In challenging times it is more important than ever that Birmingham City Council and its partners work together to provide every possible support to our local traders, who are the lifeblood of our local economy.

“I have been out to our town centres across the city and have seen for myself the determination and resilience of Birmingham's independent traders. The appointment of Nigel will play a key role in helping to further unlock their potential for growth, which will in turn feed the growth of the city and region's wider economy.”

ENDS

For more information please contact Simon Houltby: 0121 303 3503

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